According to a Reuters report, astronauts aboard the International Space Station on Monday added an observation deck that will give residents of the orbital outpost a panoramic view of the station and Earth below.
After struggling with some jammed bolts, crew of the shuttle Endeavour used the station's robot arm to connect the Italian-made cupola to the newly delivered Tranquility connecting hub.
The node was initially installed on Friday, with electrical connections and commissioning occurring in a series of spacewalks over the weekend.
"It's going to help when we do robotic operations," Endeavour astronaut Terry Virts said in an in-flight interview. "It'll give us a big view in a lot of different directions."
Robot arm operators aboard the station now rely solely on camera views, with no direct view outside.
Installation of Tranquility and the cupola, both supplied by the European Space Agency, marks the end of major construction of the ISS, an international effort that first began in 1998.
NASA has only four more space shuttle missions scheduled to ferry spare parts and supplies to the station, a project of 16 nations that has been under construction since 1998, reports Reuters.
The Hubble Space Telescope has taken the deepest near-infrared image of the universe in history, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration announced on Tuesday.
The image, which was taken in August by the "HUDF09" team, features galaxies that formed just 600 million years after the Big Bang. NASA said that not only are those the oldest galaxies ever seen, but the data that can be extracted from the image will provide "insights into how galaxies grew in their formative years early in the universe's history."
Hubble was able to capture such detail, thanks to the Wide Field Camera 3, which was installed earlier this year. The camera captures light from "near-infrared wavelengths," allowing it to peer deeper into the galaxy than its predecessors. "The light from very distant galaxies is stretched out of the ultraviolet and visible regions of the spectrum into near-infrared wavelengths by the expansion of the universe," NASA said.
NASA says not to worry: the world is not coming to an end on December 21, 2012.
NASA is trying to dispel some rumours that have been going around surrounding the new doomsday movie "2012". A rogue planet named Nibiru and discovered by the Sumerians is not on a collision course with Earth, they say. And a solar flare won't toast the planet.
NASA has devoted a page on its website to tell movie viewers nothing bad is going to happen to Earth on December 21, 2012.
It says the science behind the end of the world quickly unravels when pinned down to the 2012 timeline.
The Mayan calendar theory says that year 2012 is when the Mayan "Long Count," a unit of time within the Mayan Calendar, resets to zero from its age-old running tally of 1,872,000 days (5,125.3661 years) and claims that the end of time will come as an obscure planet collides with Earth.
NASA scientists have discovered nearly 25 gallons of water in the wake of their experiment last month, in which they had a space craft slam into the lunar surface.
Preliminary data from the Lunar CRater Observation and Sensing Satellite, or LCROSS, indicates that the mission successfully uncovered water during the Oct. 9, 2009 impacts into the permanently shadowed region of Cabeus cater near the moon’s south pole.
The discovery raises hopes that in the future, astronauts could build a lunar outpost, or have the moon serve as a launch pad to distant parts of our solar system.